Book Club – Geek Girl All That Glitters by Holly Smale

I’ve been out of commission lately as I’ve had no internet (I know – horror, horror) and I’ve also gotten a chest infection as well on top of everything so here’s a book review I did a while back. I’ll have some new book reviews for you coming up shortly. One good thing about no internet: You read books more!

Vamp It Up Manchester

The Geek Girl series by Holly Smale has become so popular, All That Glitters is already the fourth book in the series, which only started a year ago with From Geek To Chic. Loosely based on the authors miss-adventures – the books follow the character of Harriet Manners as she tries to navigate modelling (accidentally) and being a teen geek.

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All That Glitters catches up with Harriet a week after she returns from New York where she is looking forward to starting 6th Form college at her old school in the UK. She has to deal with making new friends, avoiding the old bullies and wondering why her old friends seem to be drifting away from her. Then there is her continuing heartbreak after the split with her adoring model boyfriend and a few rather unexpected add campaigns to deal with.

This is a book which you will fly through…

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35 Random Things I Now Realise About Life At 35

This is one of the few (if not only) times I’ve reaveled my age on this blog, since leaving my 20’s as if it’s a secret that I’m not ‘young’ anymore. Anyway age is relative, in fact I realised that most things in life are relative and I really like being this age anyway! Here’s a list of the wonderful, weird and random things I’ve learned in my 35 years.

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  1. Everything is relative from happiness, age, health, weight and even how much drama is actually in your life and how much control you have over it. Quite often the things that seems awful at the time, could actually be a lot worse. There is nearly always a moment where things get better and that’s what we need to focus on.
  2. Just because certain skincare is expensive, doesn’t always mean it’s better than cheaper dupes.
  3. You can be really crap at stuff and it doesn’t matter as my Mum would say ‘as long as you’ve tried your best’. I mean who can ask for more than that? I will always be crap at drawing on that second wing of eyeliner so it’s even. I will always be crap at tallying up the cost of more than three products in a supermarket. Big deal!
  4. Life doesn’t just happen aroynd you as romantically serendipitous or scary as that may sound – depending on your outlook – the choices you make usually have at least some bearing on it. By not being meerley an observer in your own life and taking responsibility you feel more empowered and also realise how your actions effect others.
  5. Sometimes shit happens no matter how hard you try to get something right or to plan something or avoid something. It isn’t necessarily a reflection on your abilities, sometimes life just gets in the way.
  6. Avocados aren’t spelt ‘addvocados’ and are rarley fit for consumption, as they are either rock hard or a soggy bruised mess in disguise. If you are one of those people that can find that rare window of perfect avo goodness then you have my respect.
  7. If you only did something when it met everyone else’s approval, you would never do anything! Whether it’s your style, your hobby, your diet, all lifestyle choices basically, they are your choices. You shouldn’t have to apologise for them or bend them to fit in with other people’s idea of ‘normal’ whatever that is.
  8. There is no way to make green tea taste nice, not even with all of the honey in the world….Unless you turn it into ice cream possibly?
  9. Let it go. At the risk of sounding like Disney’s Ellsa, sometimes you just have to get over it! Life isn’t always fair, people aren’t always rational and even your favourite takeaway can get your greatly anticipated Friday night feast order totally wrong. Sure stand up for yourself and don’t take crap off people. Sure, sometimes it can be a good stress realese to look heavenwards and ask “Seriously, are you shitting me?!” or to scream into a pillow but after that…Let. It. Go.
  10. I’m a bigger geek than I first realised. I’ve found some great geek blogger forums on Facebook and reading through the news feeds I realised I was familiar with about 80% of the shows, books, games and characters mentioned, even if I wasn’t a huge fan of them all. *Geeky celebratory  dance*
  11. It is possible to do something difficult if you really, really love it. Sometimes it needs a lot of time, practice, patience and determination. If you persevere long enough you might find one day that it suddenly clicks and becomes natural and less of a struggle.
  12. If you aren’t hungry but need protein then smoothies can work wonders. Just add either peanut butter, protein powder, macha powder, hummus, quinoa or seeds.
  13. Not everyone will get it. Even some of your best friends might glaze over or quickly change the subject when you start talking about certain subjects. Even when it comes to Harry Potter, your amazing new shoes or even a chronic illness. You can’t make people be get on your wavelength and you shouldn’t take it too personally if they don’t.
  14. Surround yourself with people who do get it. For every person who you can have a laugh with and invite out to do group stuff with, I’d say there needs to be two people who totally understand you, and you them.
  15. Get out there, literally. You could wait years to find someone who wants to go with you and get frustrated or you could just go by yourself. I cannot tell you how much his has built my confidence and independence over the years.
  16. If a person really loves you they will make the effort. I’m not saying you should ever expect to change someone to fit your criteria but if they are doing something unreasonable (like being abusive) which makes you miserable, they will make a great effort to change themselves. If not, move along!
  17. Having a broad social group is fun. My social group has nearly always been a mixture of ages, races and to a certain extent classes. That way there is nearly always someone who will be up for whatever it is you are interested in. You also get wider range of advice and different perspectives and you might be surprised at how much your own perspective broadens.
  18. It’s good to have something to care for. Even if it’s just a house plant, it teaches you responsibility, gives you a sense of accomplishment and hopefully it will be a joy that enriches your life, rather a chore.
  19. Going cruelty free is really easy if I’m being honest. I’m talking about being veggie and using products that aren’t animal tested. That is my personal definition of ‘cruelty free’ (I know everyone has there own ethics and definitions and that’s just fine with me). Even if you just buy your skincare/makeup, haircare and house cleaning basics (or get inspo from Pinterest and make your own) then you have made a great start and can slowly build from there. Same with ordering things when eating out or shopping, start small and work your way toward your goal.
  20. Parents struggle too and aren’t meant to have it all figured out. Yes, they can be annoying, controlling even, they can be judgmental or a bit of a know-it-all who doesn’t take their own advice. However, they are just trying to get through life as best they can, just like you are. They are flawed just like you and need help sometimes, just like you.
  21. Fashion goes out of fashion but your style is always your own. 
  22. Everyone needs a duvet day sometimes. This doesn’t mean you are lazy only that your body and mind need some rest because they have been over stimulated by things recently and need to recharge.
  23. Even if you are a bad cook you will still rock at making pizza, fajitas,  pasta and salad. Maybe even smoothies and stir fries ;0)
  24. Bath bombs with glitter, paper or floaty bits are a pain in the arse to clean up afterwards.
  25. Most photographs can be edited to look good. Even if you only alter the contrast, brightness and saturation.
  26. ‘Me time’ is so important. I used to be the kind of person that wanted to be around people 24/7 and I was endlessly sociable. I never got to learn what I liked to do though, my own interests or what it was like to be quiet and peaceful. These days I think it’s essential to get back an equilibrium where I can cope with everything and also appreciate myself a bit more.
  27. It’s possible to be your own motivation. When you’ve felt crappy and have been staying in doors for a few days, throwing on some comfy clothes, fixing your appearance slightly and going outside, even just to the local shops or park can make a massive difference to your mood and therefor wellbeing.
  28. Not everyone will treat you in he way that you would treat them if the situation was reversed. Basically, just because you have been a thoroughly decent human being to someone repeatedly does not mean that will always return the favour. Maybe they are having an off day, maybe they aren’t as ethical as you or maybe they are just a dick.
  29. Exercise should be done enthusiastically when you are young. Believe me when I say it gets a lot harder with age, that age being 35!
  30. There’s a fine line between being a bad-ass bitch and just straight out bitchy. There are times to call out someone for bad service or letting you down and there are times when you should just hold your tongue and shrug it off. Either way you should always try to be reasonable and adult.
  31. Sometime when people say something that’s oddly profound they are trying to give you a hint. Most people don’t just say things for the sake of it. If someone says something criptic it’s usually because they are trying to give you a hint without actually committing themselves.
  32. It’s a good idea to just enhance your appearance rather than altering it completely. I enhance my features that could use it and play down the one’s that I’m not fond of but I still essentially look like myself. Ain’t nothing wrong with looking like yourself, unless you’ve sunk 12  vodka’s and stayed out until 3.00am last night.
  33. Trust your instincts. That niggling feeling you have about someone or something is probably there for a reason. I’m not saying if you feel nervous before a job interview or big social gathering. I mean if you feel genuinely apprehensive of someone’s motives or the way a situation is progressing, you never have to just go along with it.
  34. If you are wearing light coloured clothes and you are opening a container full of any kind of liquid, no matter how carefully, you will decorate yourself with it.
  35. We are all just visitors on this earth. In the grand scheme of things we are totally inconsequential. Together, however we can make a difference to each other and this planet we call home. Don’t underestimate yourself and your impact but at the same time don’t take yourself too seriously and enjoy yourself!

 

1847 Vegetarian Restaurant

I’ve reviewed 1847 Vegetairan Restaurant twice before, first in 2013 and second in 2015 but it’s such a great restaurant I think it’s worth a mention every time I visit.

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I was hoping to get a cocktail down me before my starters had arrived, as my body was a little tense and needed to relax, however the drinks order was taken with the food order and both cocktail and food arrived around the same time. Some might say this is an improvement on the way most restaurants take orders. I was surprised to see the only cocktails on offer were either gin based or vanilla vodka based so hating gin I ordered a vanilla vodka, rhubarb and Prosecco creation, which was sweet and really refreshing.

1847 Manchester review

For my starter I ordered aubergine rolls stuffed with buckwheat, soya yoghurt (which tasted incredible), parsley and sorrel. The bloke ordered the Spring Pie, puff pastry stuffed with smoked cheddar, beetroot, greens, marrow served with cress & marjoram pesto.

My first thought when our starters arrived was “Restaurants are still using slates?” and then “My god the high pitched screeching of cutlery on slate is physically going to be painful to me” but only two minor screeches ensued so it was totally fine. Both of our starters were well balanced, a little sweet, a little savoury and thoroughly enjoyed.

1847 Restaurant Review

With my mains I ordered an American chardonnay which was really quite different to any white I’ve tasted before, fruity and slightly biscuity. Such a change from crisp fruity wines.

I ordered my usual ‘fish’ and chips (halloumi cheese) with mint peas and lemon curd and the bloke ordered herb breadcrumb oyster mushrooms, sautéed asparagus and quinoa with a roasted garlic sauce. Yes he’s got into quinoa finally! We ordered a side of roasted vegetables, with the sweetest, flavourful radishes I’ve ever eaten. I really liked that the peas were al dente and not mushy peas this time but I also noticed the portion size of the halloumi had been reduced. As traditional fish and chips often come with a slice of lemon, I wished the lemon curd had a little more zing and less sweetness but that’s just my palette. The coating of the blokes mushrooms tasted so wonderful I should have asked what the flavours were.

1847 Restaurant review

The bloke ordered the 1847 brownie, which he really enjoyed but wished it were a little more gooey inside. He didn’t think the chilli brittle was strong enough in flavour until I told him if it were any stronger it would over power everything else. He’s such a chilli freak! I went for vanilla ice cream which was simple but beautiful.

I was incredibly impressed to see so many vegan and gluten free options included, often both together in the same dish. I stupidly forgot to ask for gluten free batter on my halloumi but I don’t feel bloated today at all, which is a nice change.

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1847 Vegetarian Restaurant, 58 mosley street (entrance on booth street), manchester, m2 3hz.

Tel 0161 236 1811

Monday-Friday: Midday-3pm & 5pm-10pm
Saturday: Midday-10.30pm
Sunday: Midday-8pm

Chrissie

Light Block Clip On Reading Light Review

Light Block clip on reading Light

This is perfect for when you need a light to read by but don’t want to disturb anyone else near by. Erganomic and stylish, it simply clips onto the back of your book, the goose neck bends over your page and you turn the light on by pressing the grey square.

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As you can see the light is quite bright but there isn’t any light pollution around the book and it didn’t strain my rather light-sensitive eyes at all.

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I bought the Light Block from Waterstones for around £6.00 and was pleased to see that it comes with 3 X AG3 (LR41) batteries which are easy to replace. This light really has got me into reading again!

Chrissie

The Perfect Kaftan & Beach Cover Up

hippie beach cover up

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I bought this beach cover-up from Matalan as I wanted a long sleeved tunic for summer. A Small size equals a 10/12 comfortably with a spaghetti strap vest underneath. The hem ends just above mid-thigh and the sleeves are a good length with a lovely flared shape. The fabric is only slightly sheer and surprisingly warm considering  how floaty it is.

How wild is this pattern!? Feeling tired today and slightly spaced out so I wasn’t up for a full ‘outfit of the day’ shoot but really wanted to share this with you. Peace.

❤ Chrissie❤

Ozeri Touch II Bathroom Scales Review

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The slimmest and most contemporary looking scales I’ve ever owned (available in black and white), the Ozeri Touch II scales measure weight, body fat, hydration levels, muscle mass and bone index. It does this by using bioelectrical impedance – what? Basically our body conducts electricity and different parts conduct better or worse than others so when the scale sends an electrical pulse through your body (don’t worry, you don’t feel it), it works out the mass of each individual part. Genius!

To start using these scales you stand on them to get a reading of your weight and then programme in your height, gender and age using the simple Tare (mode), Set (enter) and direction buttons. It’s advised that you then write down the following readings of how your weight is comprised e.g. water, bone mass etc.

Pros

  • Aesthetically pleasing
  • Built in memory can hold profiles of 8 different people
  • Maximum weight 200kg
  • Can be used quickly by anyone just measuring their overall weight
  • Re-enforced glass which is easy to clean and anti-bacterial
  • LED with calming blue light so scale can be used in low light, no need to blind everyone first thing in the morning
  • No need to bend down as buttons can be operated with toes
  • Although scale should be used on a flat surface, I still found it accurate on thin carpet and then on laminate with a very slight incline
  • Fairly light-weight and portable for this type of scale

Cons

  • People with small feet can easily press middle buttons by mistake with when weighing themselves
  • A little slippery when wet
  • Moves onto the next measurement too quickly when you are trying to write them all down for future reference
  • Memory does not save readings of measurements. Can’t review and compare your last weighings.

Ozeri Touch II Bathroom Scales £34.99 Amazon

Checked Boyfriend Shirt – Next

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Why do my eyes always come across as a dull mint green in photo’s when they are lime green almost yellow?

I bought this to go under a thick navy style jumper as the neck was really wide, which looked kinda sexy but was way too chilly. I actually love how this shirt looks on it’s own though, which has surprised me. It feels like it’s made from the softest brushed cotton like the 90’s versions but it’s actually a man-made fibre.

I need to point out that although the cut is feminine to some extent, it’s more of a ‘boyfriend’ fit, so if you want a really fitted shirt then I’d suggest going down one or two sizes. I love the fit though as it’s one the few shirts I’ve been able to wear without getting button-gape across the chest, something that most brands never seem to allow for.

Chrissie

The Northern Slang Dictionary – UK


This is for anyone daan saath in the UK or anyone else around the world!

Nah = I don’t think so

Innit = It really is, isn’t it

You daft bugger = You silly sausage

Fannying about = Faffing around for longer than is necessary when packing a bag etc.

Y’right? (Are you alright) = Hello

Ta = Thank you

See ya = Goodbye

The big light = The main light overhead

Solid = Really rather difficult

Settee = Sofa/couch

Under the stairs = The pantry/larder/broom cupboard

The buttons = TV remote, as in “chuck us the buttons”

Goin t’shop = Could be any or all of the shops in the immediate area

Our kid = A person who may or not be your brother

Mate = Bro

Going out = Properly going out on the town for the night

Kecks = Pants or trousers

Bumped into = Accidentally came across an old acquaintance

Tuuuune! = Really fantastic song

Fod = Forehead or head

Wankered = Really rather inebriated

Throne = Toilet

Mashed = Confused, drunk, hungover or stressed “as in ‘my heads mashed”

Muppet = Idiot

Chilly = Almost but not quite cold

Spitting = Raining a little

Hammering down = Raining very heavily

Baps = Big, round, bread buns used for butties or slang for boobs

Buttie = Something like sausages with HP sauce inside a bap

Dinner = Lunch

Tea = Evening meal

The pots = The washing up of the pots and pans

Rank = Really quite disgusting

The lurgie = Sickness as in “Don’t come too close I’ve caught the lurgie”

Brew = Cuppa = Cuppa tea

Ginnel = Back passage

Chrissie

Pastel Goth Alt Style

Pastel Goth

Healthy and Tasty Alternatives

Every thing here is gluten and dairy free (that’s what’s healthier for me) but everything here is generally healthy anyway.

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Clockwise from left – right; Tyrrells Poshcorn, much healthier than snacking on crisps; Nutribix, made from a very old grain called Sorghum this tastes almost exactly like Wheatabix and has the same consistency when mixed with (rice) milk; Rude Health Corn Crackers, these are better than rice cakes in my opinion as they are thinner and much more crunchy; Mrs Crimbles Jam Coconut rings, healthier than a cup cake, muffin or jam filled doughnut but just as tasty; Great Food Aromatic Moroccan Koftas, OMG are these delicious, slightly sweet but savoury in flavour and incredibly filling; Beck’s Blue, basically the non-alcoholic version of Beck’s, tastes the same but no ill-advised decisions are made afterward lol; Whole Earth Smooth Organic Peanut Butter,  containing sustainable palm oil and sea salt but no added sugar. Ironically it’s a little too salty and I add a flat teaspoon of white sugar when I include it in my smoothies.

I found these items in Tesco and Co-op, no online shopping needed.

Chrissie